A qualified Plastic Surgeon has to do an additional 7-10 years in post graduate surgical training after completing their medical degree. The first two to five years are most commonly spent in general surgical training and a further four years in specialty plastic and cosmetic surgery training. After these extensive years of training, the Plastic Surgeons have reached a qualification called the Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS).
Make sure to look for a fully qualified Plastic Surgeon as reflected by the letters FRACS (Plast Surg) under a doctor’s name and also clarify that they are affiliated with the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). It’s these titles and memberships that give you the peace of mind you are in the hands of a fully qualified Plastic Surgeon who has undergone many years of training and exams in surgery beyond the basic medical degree (GP).
Consequently, cosmetic surgeons only have to have a basic medical degree. They might never have trained in surgery and while many of these people are good doctors, you need to be aware they have not done the training and passed the rigorous practical and theoretical examinations required to call themselves Plastic Surgeons.
Always request the credentials of any surgeon, make sure you know their specialities as well as all risks and rehabilitation regarding your procedure.